Summary: How to prevent burnout by observing the forth Commandment
Do you remember the old “Blue Laws?” When I was a child not many businesses were open on Sundays. Those that were opened were looked down upon.
The “Blue Laws” were eventually challenged in court and done away with. Now, you can shop, eat out, conduct business, enjoy recreation or just about anything else on Sundays.
Burnout has become a major problem in America. Maybe you are here this morning feeling burned out already. You had to bring home work from the office just to stay caught up. You know you’ll be as tired when you go into work tomorrow morning, as you were when you came home Friday evening. One of the greatest stress marks on families today is being overworked.
God has a lot to say about this problem. It’s interesting that today’s Commandment is the longest of all the Ten Commandments. I want to preach today on keeping the Sabbath Day. I call the message: “Who Needs A Day Off?” Let’s read the passage.
The first part of the message deals with understanding the Sabbath; the second part with utilizing the Sabbath.
I. UNDERSTANDING THE SABBATH
A. What is it?
The word “Sabbath” comes from the Hebrew word “shabbat,” meaning to cease or desist. The primary meaning is the cessation of all work. In the Commandment there are two reminders given: (1) God created the heavens and the earth in six days and rested on the seventh (v.11). (2) That Israel lived in slavery in Egypt where they did not get a day off or allowed to have a day to worship (Duet.5:15). Sabbath is to be a day of REST and WORSHIP.
B. When is it?
Friday? That’s when the Muslims observe it. Saturday? That’s when the Jews observe it. Sunday? That’s when Christians observe it. Since we are Christians let’s deal with observing Sabbath on Sunday. Why Sunday? There is no place in the Bible where God commands us to worship on Sundays. In the New Testament, followers of Christ began to meet and worship on Sundays. This was in honor of the resurrection of Jesus which took place on a Sunday. It is referred to in the New Testament as “The Lord’s Day.”
The issue should not be which day it is:
16 So let no one judge you in food or in drink, or regarding a festival or a new moon or sabbaths, 17 which are a shadow of things to come, but the substance is of Christ. NKJV
5 One person esteems one day above another; another esteems every day alike. Let each be fully convinced in his own mind. 6 He who observes the day, observes it to the Lord;
C. Why is it?
Why does God want us to have a Sabbath Day? Basically, it is for two reasons: to rest and to worship. God meant it for our own good. Jesus said:
27 And He said to them, "The Sabbath was made for man, and not man for the Sabbath. NKJV
Observing the Sabbath Day as God intended will accomplish two things for us: It will draw us closer to God and it will prevent burnout. Every 7 days you need to get recharged physically, emotionally and spiritually.
II. UTILIZING THE SABBATH
The Bible says to remember the Sabbath Day and keep it holy. How do you keep it holy? By using it the way God intended. There are three ways that God wants us to use the Sabbath:
A. To Rest My Body
God set the example for us in creation. God wasn’t tired after 6 days of creating but we are not God and we do get tired so He showed us to rest one day a week.
The Supreme Court of the U.S. has ruled that it’s OK for businesses to be closed on Sundays not for religious reasons but to give employees a day of rest.
If you are burning the candle at both ends you are not as bright as you think. You can be consumed by your career. Why do people push themselves so hard? More money, more recognition, more sense of fulfillment, achievement, whatever. But our bodies are not built for non-stop work.
An old Indian proverb says, “You break the bow if it’s always bent.”
Ps. 23 says in part, “He makes me to lie down in green pastures.” We need to rest.
Leonardo Da Vinci – “Every now and then go away, have a little relaxation, for when you come back to your work your judgment will be surer, since to remain constantly at work will cause you to lose power of judgment.”
Some people feel guilty when they relax. Jesus relaxed. He took a day off every week. Are you better than Jesus?